Written especially for those readers coming to VB.NET from an earlier version of Visual Basic, VB.NET in a Nutshell offers a quick language tour as well as a nicely thorough reference to all standard VB objects, methods, and properties. Even if you are a raw beginner, this concise reference is really all you need to get onboard with the new version of the world's most popular programming language.
The first sections of this text zero in on what's new and different in VB.NET. From the basics of the language, centering on data types and object-oriented features, this quick-start guide highlights essential language features that every VB.NET programmer needs to know. There's also material here on the underlying .NET framework, from deployment basics (like .NET assemblies) to built-in namespaces. Coverage of delegates and event handling shows how to process events. The substantially different exception handling model of VB.NET is contrasted with the older ways of handling errors.
The heart of this title has to be its reference material (over 400 pages), primarily on the built-in core VB classes in the new .NET version. While there were rumors that VB.NET changed VB completely, this material should reassure you. By providing APIs that resemble older versions, VB programmers still can leverage common string, date, and time and other functions. Every object, method, and property is described, along with sample code, and differences with VB6. A standout here are "gotchas" when using the new APIs compared to VB6. Besides objects and APIs, there is also coverage of language keywords (for logical, looping, and branching statements), too.
The book closes with several useful reference sections, one of which details all the new features to be found in VB.NET. This is almost a must-read for anyone facing the new VB.NET for the first time. Another appendix here lists VB.NET language APIs. While it's true that you can use many languages with .NET, VB.NET Language in a Nutshell covers the APIs that will give VB.NET its real flavor as a new programming language. Both a quick-start guide and a worthwhile reference to use everyday at your desk, this title is a great way to start using VB.NET in real projects quickly. --Richard Dragan
- Introduction to VB.NET
- Variables and data types (including arrays, collections and parameter, and arguments)
- Object-oriented programming in VB.NET (classes, inheritance, polymorphism and overloading)
- Overview of the .NET Framework
- The Common Language Runtime (CLR)
- Managed execution
- Assemblies and VB.NET
- .NET namespaces (including the system namespace)
- Delegates and events
- Error handling in VB.NET (including exception handling techniques)
- Comprehensive language reference to VB.NET objects
- Methods and properties (including sample code, programming tips/gotchas, VB.NET vs. VB6 differences)
- Reference to what's new in VB.NET
- Language elements and operators in VB.NET
- Using the VB.NET command-line compiler
- Unsupported VB 6 language elements